I'm always looking for small hand made gifts to make around the holidays. Just something sweet to tuck in to a gift for family and friends or something to strike just the right holiday note for an acquaintance or teacher--not too much and not too little.
This year, the project that struck me as just right were sachets. I ordered lavender, balsam and cedar shavings from a shop on Etsy (I hesitate to recommend the particular shop because it took over a month to receive my items...much longer than their stated processing and shipping time). There are many Etsy shops that sell these items--my suggestion is to do a search and then double check your chosen shop's feedback before purchasing :) When in doubt, convo the seller to ask about shipping times. If they get back to you right away, you've probably chosen a good one!
Regardless of the delay, the lavender and balsam smell fantastic. Lavender always reminds me of the summer I spent in France and the balsam is piney but also sweet. The cedar shavings, while smelling wonderful, were much larger than I had expected (I was imagining coarse sawdust, and received hefty curls of cedar wood) so those will be put to use for another project.
Sachets are fairly easy to accomplish, even for the novice sewist, but if you'd like to know how I made mine, I've included a tutorial for today's post. Read on for the details!
Begin by cutting 4-3/8" squares of fabric
(I made quite a lot of these, and chose contrasting fabric for each side)
Fold down one edge of each triangle about 3/8", wrong sides together, and press
(you'll see why two steps down)
Line up the fabric squares with right sides together and sew along the remaining 3 sides
(I set my needle to the 'down' position as I began, so when I reached the corner, the needle was in the fabric and I could lift the presser foot, pivot 90 degrees, and continue sewing without having to start a new seam)
Trim the corners to eliminate any bulk before the next step
Turn the pocket inside out, using a tool to get a crisp point on the corners
Once the outside of the sachet was completed, I sewed an extra pocket for the contents. I didn't want any of the lavender or balsam to escape and make a mess, so I chose a coarse muslin fabric, cut a rectangle measuring 4" x 8" that I folded and sewed on three sides. This pocket does not need to be turned inside out, simply fill about 2/3 full with your chosen contents and carefully sew the final seam shut.
The two components, ready for insertion
Place the pouch inside the pocket
Tuck it far enough in that the edge won't interfere for the next step
Using a needle and thread, neatly whip stitch the final edge closed
If you want to get a little fancy, choose two contrasting buttons for the center of the sachet
Hold them both at once and pass the needle several times through both
Finish it off by tying a knot
Here's part of the pile I worked on this year :) Happy Holidays!